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Tuesday, August 26, 2008 Neckpain Nelda, Community Member, asks

Q: I fell down and hit my back, back left shoulder blade? An MRI showed disk protrusions. I need help

I am 52 years old and a female.  I was in the process of sitting down in chair,  I did not know that someone had pulled my chair away from its original position.  I fell onto the concrete hitting my back and left shoulder blade.  I tried to catch myself with my hands, but I did not succeed.  I went to a Dr. ....., D.O.  I was given muscle relaxers and told that I had probably bruised and jammed my wrist, shoulder.  I had pain in the center of my buttock which traveled down my leg to the outside of my ankle.  I was given an order that I was ready to go back to work.  Four months went by and my pain never left me.  The weight of a sheet on the toes of my affected leg was very painful. I slept with that foot outside of the covers.  I went back back to this doctor.  I had also had b.m. that would be in my undergarments most every day.  I told the doctor about the b.m. incidents and he had me take several x-rays.  Then I was told that I had DDD.  Physical therapy began at this point.  Heat, Electrical stimulation, exercises.  My pain only increased.  The Dr.....D.O. recommended that I have a MRI.  Before the MRI, the physical therapists tried neck traction.  About 2 days later, I woke up during the night to go to the bathroom and almost fell to the floor.  My head felt extremely heavy.  I had to sit in a recliner for two days.  I had the MRI after traction was applied.  The MRI showed that I had several bulges and protrusions in the Cervical spine and two bulges in the THoraci area.  Also two annular tears were found in the Lumbar spine with bulging disks also.  I have not seen a neurosurgeon yet.  I was seen by an orthopaedic surgeon who gave two choices.  First, I had to decide which one hurt the most, the neck or back.  Then whether or not to have steroid injections or surgery.  I then asked for a second opinion.  I was sent to a physiatrist who also was pushing steroid injections.  I have been requesting a neurosurgeon without any results as of yet.  I am experiencing popping in neck followed by extreme heaviness in my head and such a strange feeling in my head.  My neck feels tight with pain not only radiating down my arm but also shooting across to the opposite shoulder now.  The center of my back is now hurting also.  I have wanted a neurosurgeon, should I settle for less than the original doctor suggested???Please help me, I don't want to get older with more problems, aches, and pains.  Why I am I not referred to a neurosurgeon???  The pain is radiating up the back of neck to ears and the upper back of my head.  I am afraid if I wait much longer that more lasting and serious damage, possibly irreversible.

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Answers (2)
cahenry, Community Member
8/31/08 5:18pm

I have three bulging discs in my neck one in the middle and one near my hips.  I fell on my head when I was 27 and now I am 57.  I have been living with this pain for 30 years.  I do not want surgery, so I was finally sent to a pain specialist who is also a neurologist.  He put me on meds that are sufficient for me to work.  I go to my regular Dr. once a month for refills on my prescriptions.  I have had shots all over my back, in my neck, been to physical therapist, had biiofeedback, neck traction, been to an orthopedic surgeon (who was NO help at all), what I call a shocker machine or a TIMS unit, and some of it helped for a short period of time.  The medication gets me through the days.  If you want surgery, I would insist on going to see a neurosurgeon.  If you want to manage, I would go to a pain specialist.  cahenry

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Stephanie, Community Member
8/27/08 7:54am

You should demand to see a neurosurgeon!  The surgeon needs to review your MRI and make a recommendation as to your best course of treatment.  My Primary Care physician sent me to get an MRI after I continued to experience excruciating pain in my neck and shoulder, as well as numbness & tingling in my arms and legs.   After finding out that I had herniated discs, she sent me directly to the neurosurgeon. I am only 27 yrs old and was stunned to find out what was wrong!  My NS gave me two options, steriod injections or surgery.  I have opted for the injections, though the first was not very helpful.  However, the results are different for all people. One treatment may work for you.  I also get massages and light chiropractic treatment weekly. ( This was approved by my NS and I would only do so after speaking with NS first)  Long story short, we only have one spinal cord, and when it comes to treating disc problems, I would trust a specialist in that area more than I would trust a general DO.  On a side note, I am considering another option that was recommended to me by a friend with a similar problem. It is called prolotherapy and is similar to the steriod injections. The injections use a glucose solution to help regenerate muscles that support your spine.  Good luck to you!

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By Neckpain Nelda, Community Member— Last Modified: 06/19/12, First Published: 08/26/08